Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Portland Announces Façade Improvement Program

9/23/2008 - NEWS ADVISORY
City of Portland
389 Congress Street
Portland, Maine 04101
CONTACT: Nicole Clegg, 207-756-8173, 207-272-4477 (cell)

September 22, 2008

Portland Announces Façade Improvement Program
Grants offered to improve storefronts available for businesses and properties located on Congress Street

What: The City of Portland’s Economic Development Division announces a new grant program for businesses and properties located along Congress Street between Monument Square and Longfellow Square. The program offers grants and architectural assistance to restore or renovate commercial storefronts and replace deteriorated or poor quality commercial signs and awnings. Grants must be matched be an equal investment in private funds.

The Façade Improvement Program offers grants of up to $20,000 for individual storefronts and up to $2,000 for signs and awnings. The program funded by the federal Community Development Block grants will cap out at $84,000 and therefore, priority will be placed upon applications that will have the greatest impact on enhancing the streetscape. Grant applications are due by November 7, 2008.

For more information about the program, visit the city’s website at Portland Facade Improvement Program.

Who: City staff from Economic Development, Historic Preservation and Community Development as well as the program architect John Whipple.

"The city is pleased to offer this grant opportunity to business and property owners as a tool to help strengthen the revitalization of downtown Congress Street,” stated City Manager Joe Gray. “Portland's program is modeled on successful facade improvement programs in Maine and throughout the U.S. One key to their success is providing sufficient incentives to spark increased private investment in the renaissance of downtowns.”

When: Monday, October 6, 2008
5:30 PM

Where: City Hall - Room 24

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